Techstars Startup Weekend Sustainability

    Friday, December 6 - 8, 2019

  1. Overview
  2. Schedule
  3. Judges
  4. Coaches and Mentors
  5. Sponsors
  6. Organizing Team
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Techstars Startup Weekend Sustainability

Friday, December 6 - 8, 2019

Friday, December 6 - 8, 2019
Event starts at 6:30 pm

Make School
555 Post Street
San Francisco, CA 94102

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Your idea in 54 hours

Do you have an idea you'd like to pursue or a problem you'd like to solve but don't know where to start or who to start with? 

Create a solution to address at least one of the UN Sustainability Development Goals!

Techstars Startup Weekend is the place to look for a team, create a prototype of your idea, validate your business idea, and receive feedback from experienced entrepreneurs, all in one weekend.

What do you need to bring?

Lots of energy! You'll pitch your own idea or listen to others, then vote on the most interesting ideas and form teams with diverse skill sets. You can come with friends, but you’ll get the full experience if you participate in separate teams. Remember, it’s all about the team.

Your idea should be something you have not previously worked on. The idea you pitch and the problem you set out to solve can span social, educational, financial, environmental, or other issues. Over the course of the weekend you'll be challenged to create a prototype of your MVP, or minimum viable product, that fits the needs of your target customer. You'll get feedback, iterate, and likely pivot your approach entirely! Important: You cannot have worked previously on your idea.

Techstars Startup Weekend is a full weekend long experience. Your ticket includes:

  • 7 full (and delicious) meals over the course of the weekend
  • Benefits and discounts from our global partners
  • One-on-one time with amazing mentors
  • A new network of developers, designers, and entrepreneurs eager, like you, to change the world.
  • All the internet and coffee you can consume.

Watch the video below to see what you can expect, and if you’re feeling inspired click on the “Buy Ticket” button now!

Still have questions, feel free to reach us at “”.

Don’t wait any longer and join the Techstars Startup Weekend movement!

No talk, all action!

1st Place:
- Free admission to Founder Institute's accelerator program
- 30% participation fee discount for Cleantech Open's accelerator program - the winning team still needs to apply and be admitted to the program 
- Waived application fee for Cleantech Open.
- An invitation for one team member to attend our Startup Catalyst's Future Founders mission official dinner, in addition to some selected events from the Startup Catalyst Future Founders mission schedule in 2020 (dates TBD).
- Consideration to receive pro bono legal services with law firms in the Lawyers for a Sustainable Economy Initiative. Consideration will be based on type of entity structure, meeting the Initiative's eligibility criteria, and law firm approval.

2nd Place:
- Waived application fee for Cleantech Open.
- Consideration to receive pro bono legal services with law firms in the Lawyers for a Sustainable Economy Initiative. Consideration will be based on type of entity structure, meeting the Initiative's eligibility criteria, and law firm approval.

3rd Place:
- Waived application fee for Cleantech Open.
- Consideration to receive pro bono legal services with law firms in the Lawyers for a Sustainable Economy Initiative. Consideration will be based on type of entity structure, meeting the Initiative's eligibility criteria, and law firm approval.

See what it's all about

Learn More


Friday December 6th

6:30 pm
Arrive at the venue and get checked in

7:00 pm
Dinner & Networking
Eat food, share ideas, practice pitches, get to know fellow participants

7:20 pm
Welcome & Speakers
Review agenda for the weekend and introduce speakers, coaches, and community leaders

7:30 pm
Pitches Start
Optionally line up to give your pitch

9:00 pm
Attendees vote for the top pitches

9:15 pm
Form Teams
Teams start forming and discussing ideas

10:00 pm
Begin Work
Start to formalize teams and take an inventory of skills. Be honest, and direct about what resources and skills are needed for the weekend. You may stay and work as late as the venue will allow

Saturday December 7th

9:00 am
Arrive, simple breakfast & coffee

9:30 am
Begin Work
Teams formed and setting up workspace for the weekend

12:00 pm

1:00 pm
After-lunch check-in, status reports, call for help

2:00 pm
Coach Meetings
Coaches help teams one-on-one. They are here to help!

6:30 pm

7:30 pm
After-dinner check-in, status reports, call for help

10:00 pm
Finished for the day. You may stay and work as late as the venue will allow

Sunday December 8th

9:00 am
Arrive, simple breakfast & coffee

10:00 am
Coaches arrive. Final opportunity to ask questions

12:00 pm

12:30 pm
Coach Meetings
Coaches arrive… ASK QUESTIONS

3:00 pm
Presentation Prep & Tech Check
Final hours of worktime should be focused on perfecting your presentation, tech-check for final presentations also takes place

4:30 pm
Final Presentations

6:30 pm

7:30 pm
Judging & Awards

8:30 pm

9:00 pm
Go Home!

Event Judges

Ryan Kushner
Accelerator Guy

Ryan is an expert in energy, climate, and innovation ecosystem (incubator, accelerators and prizes). He is the author of Accelerate This! A Super Not Boring Guide To Startup Accelerators And Clean Energy Entrepreneurship, sponsored by the World Bank, Asian Development Bank, World Wildlife Fund and New Energy Nexus, and featuring Y Combinator, Techstars, 500 Startups and others innovation programs from around the world. He is the Global Network and Curriculum Lead at New Energy Nexus, faculty at Singularity University in Energy + Environment, advisor to Carbon180’s CarbonTech Lab and founder of The Oceantech Community.

Evan Hynes

Evan Hynes is the founder of Climate.Careers, an online platform dedicated to mobilizing the world's talent to solve the climate emergency.

Climate.Careers connects top mission-driven talent to high-paying, high-impact jobs at cleantech companies and nonprofits working to reverse climate change. We're building the professional network for climate solutionists – the people and organizations that are committed to advancing climate solutions.

Coaches and Mentors

Andi Trindle Mersch
Director of Coffee and Sustainability

Andi Trindle Mersch is Director of Coffee and Sustainability with Philz Coffee. In these roles, she oversees coffee sourcing and quality and leads companywide sustainability efforts. Prior to joining Philz in 2014, Ms. Trindle Mersch held a variety of responsibilities throughout more than 25 years in specialty coffee. She has published numerous trade journal articles and lectured nationally and internationally on many topics in the coffee sector and more recently in sustainability. She has held a number of leadership and board roles within the broader specialty coffee industry and is currently serving on the Food 4 Farmers Board of Directors.

Matt Eggers

Biotech investor and executive for 10 years followed by Cleantech executive for last 15 years; cleantech angel investor for 5 years; investor at $1.1B cleantech fund.

Alice Liu
Co-Founder & COO

I'm currently the co-founder and COO of Thesis (, a direct-to-consumer bicycle brand that’s challenging a very traditional industry through a transparent approach to product, ultra-lean supply chain, economic empowerment for local bike shops, and radical inclusion. I feel privileged to be part of a team that rapidly reached six figures of revenue within the first three months of sales, earned a Net Promoter Score of 90, garnered strong press, and built a great product recognized as one of the Top 5 Gravel Race Bikes of 2019 by Gravelstoke.

Throughout my career, I’ve helped build a National Geographic TV series, served as chief of staff for an impact investing firm, managed marketing for an award-winning homelessness nonprofit, and managed strategic engagements with a hypergrowth tech company featured on Forbes's Next Billion Dollar Startups. I also led the 3,000 member environmental meetup San Francisco Green Drinks and am a StartingBloc Fellow and ProInspire Fellow. I’ve been privileged to work with folks from all walks of life, from homeless individuals to ultra-high-net-worth investors. I have extensive experience in strategic relationship management with companies like Airbnb, Estee Lauder, Getty Images, Macy’s, and Michael Kors. I've also spent years producing thoughtful, high-profile events and building vibrant communities. I'm intrigued by people and how they make decisions, relate to each other, and shape their lives.

Thomas Del Monte

Business attorney with startup founding leadership experience in the and hardware equipment development experience.

Sumeet Sandhu

Seasoned technologist across eCommerce, legaltech, wireless with positive impact on millions of customers/dollars - now dedicated to climate-positive innovation. City Organizer for largest global climate hackathon held in 140+ cities - Climathon San Francisco Bay Area 2019.

Event Sponsors, and Partners

The Techstars Startup Weekend Sustainability team is grateful for the support of local community partners without whom this event would not be possible.
Learn how to become a sponsor here.

Signature Sponsors




Organizing Team

Techstars Startup Weekend San Francisco is 100% led by volunteer community leaders.
Learn how to get involved here

  • Daniel
  • Muhaimin
  • Zach
  • Wyatt
  • Ethan
  • Kushaan


Kris Riley
Director of Partners

Just another entrepreneur trying to take over the world one idea at a time. 

Kris has 3+ years experience organizing Startup Weekend events. His expertise is in payments, e-commerce, hospitality technology, product strategy, and positioning. He's started 2 businesses and is working on his 3rd currently. 

I love the startup world and mentoring/helping people mold their ideas into MVPs and eventually into validated businesses. The magic is in helping them realize that an idea needs legs to grow. And these legs are built out of involvement, sharing and doing. Let's go! 

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